Firefighters struggle to battle Fort Myers home fire; neighbors push for more hydrants

Published: Updated:

For the second time in less than a year, flames and smoke tore through a home in one south Fort Myers neighborhood.

Last July, Tammy Sweely-Basonette died when her home caught fire on Scott Lane. And on Monday, another fire ripped through a home on the same street. Fortunately, both occupants got out unharmed.

But Monday’s blaze raised concerns among neighbors.

“This isn’t the first time we’ve seen 2,000 feet of hose being run and a couple of fire departments having to come out to get the water pressure up to be able to fight the fire,” said neighbor Andee Reisig.

Fire crews were forced to spend time and resources creating a chain of fire hosing down multiple blocks to fight this fire. It ended up being more than six football fields long.

“The closest fire hydrant is at Plantation. So they had to take 5-inch, and they had to hook up the 5-inch and drag it about 2,000 feet. And lay out all that fire house all the way down the road around a couple curves and hook up to our fire truck,” said Amy Bollen with South Trail Fire Department.

That’s precisely what’s making residents of the area nervous.

“Even my house—which is on the corner—is still too far away from that hydrant. So we’ll definitely be in contact to try to get some help,” Reisig said.

And now some are calling for action.

“There are a lot of neighborhood that are like this. And it’s going to happen more and more. And people are going to lose their lives,” said neighbor Karen Miracola. “I would hate to see anybody be hurt in a fire…just because they can’t get to us.”

It’s not up to the fire department to decide where extra fire hydrants should be placed. But in this case, it will be up to neighbors to decide if they want to spend their own funds to install more along the block.

Many say that’s exactly what they plan to push for.

WINK News reporter Jessica Alpern was live in the neighborhood Tuesday morning to follow up with residents. Watch the segment below.

Copyright ©2024 Fort Myers Broadcasting. All rights reserved.

This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without prior written consent.